I am older than the Internet.
That is an absolutely mind boggling concept because the internet is so inherently part of my day to day life (hour to hour even) now, the thought that it never existed* when I was brought into this world…
I was speaking to ye ol’ parents about how fast technology has developed in the past 20 years and they went on, as parents (should I mention they’re retired?) do, about when they were younger. My father worked at IBM, so he was thoroughly aware of the computer, however he spoke to me about how there was “water-cooler” rumour-mill running wild with the concept that in 5 years time, every desk would have its own computer. He said at the time, “No way, that’s totally unbelievable and unrealistic, as if I’m going to have my own computer”. Five years later, he was proved wrong. Ten years later we had our first home computer, as well as many households across the country, let alone how today we carry miniature computers that are our smartphones
Design Fiction is imagining a ‘what if’ for a future that doesn’t exist yet. Someone thought for the computer technology “Hey, imagine if everyone had a computer, that would be pretty handy” and now we do and it is indeed, pretty handy.
Science Fiction is a lot like Design Fiction, albeit a little more expensive to envision as mentioned by Bruce Sterling. Look at Star Wars for instance, they used holographic image to communicate, and just last year the same idea was debuted where a holographic recording of the late Tupac Shakur, performed with Snoop Dogg at the US music festival Coachella (watch here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGbrFmPBV0Y). Design Fiction is something to be taken seriously, all it takes is an imagination and determination to bring fiction into reality.
However, I am still pissed off that it’s 2013 and there are still NO hover-boards available to me. Damn you Marty McFly in getting my hopes up, damn you.
*Before the heavy tech heads jump on me about this statement, I am aware that it was developed long before 1993 but I wish to talk about existing when it becomes commercially useable.